Wanderers come through tough Pre-Season encounter
“Lots of positives to take from the game” commented coach Lee Highgate “With Max and Mike fit again and the addition of Josh and Ryan to the back row there is plenty of competition. We have a few headaches in selection ahead of the St Josephs game in a couple of weeks time. Rob Lewis put in a massive 80 minute shift, for a young prop he’s going to be one to watch this season”
“Watching our centre partnership play you’d think they had been playing together for 10 seasons not just one” added Manager John Lyons. “Both Cameron and Josh have massive futures ahead of themselves”
“Interesting to see a tight head prop kicking conversions” commented someone in the crowd!
On a grey afternoon in Caerphilly both sets of coaches will have taken plenty from a really competitive pre-season game. Conditions weren’t easy with the wind and rain but both sides served up a really good encounter. The Wanderers were first to establish good field position and following a scrum deep in the home side 22 Josh Male sliced through the defence for the first score. Luke fish converted 0-7. Caerphilly struck back but when they lost a lineout in the Wanderers 22 the visitors struck again. Turnover ball was moved wide and Cameron Gibbon broke clear. Despite the attention of several defenders, a few well timed dummies set him away and he raced to the line to score the second try 0-12. At this time the Wanderers were gaining plenty in the wide channels and arguably could have scored more tries but the home side were not overawed and they continued to challenge well. A neatly taken tap penalty got them back in the game with an unconverted try 5-12 and the game ebbed and flowed as both sides tried to shrug off the pre-season rustiness. With both sets of backs getting plenty of chances to stretch their legs the high tempo of the game kept the crowd on their toes. Before half time the Wanderers stretched their lead firstly with the “old timer” Loxton forcing his way over for a score and then on the stroke of the break Ryan Davies was on hand to finish off a well executed driving maul. Half time score 5-22.
The home side began brightly at the start of the half and the visitors were forced into a period of defence. Both sides began to unload their benches and as one would expect the game became a little disjointed. Caerphilly had more of the play and their efforts were rewarded with 2 tries, one which was converted to close the gap to 17-22. This resulted in a response from the visitors and they picked up their play. With the replacement back row of Max Wootton, Mike Owen and Josh Hitchum very evident carrying the ball the home side line came under pressure. A close quarter drive by Rob Lewis, who had a huge game, bagged him a try before the home side struck back again. This meant with only a few minutes left in the game Caerphilly were still in touch at 24-27. The game ended with the Wanderers scoring their 6th try as sub Josh Hitchum scored his first try for the club and with Fish converting the final score 24-34 gave the Wanderers a win against a very competitive Caerphilly side.